NBA Finals 2012: Where Does LeBron James' Finals Performance Rank All-Time?

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NBA Finals 2012: Where Does LeBron James' Finals Performance Rank All-Time?
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The monkey is off his back, and LeBron James is an NBA champion after leading the Miami Heat to a 4-1 series victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder in the 2012 NBA Finals

Despite the burdensome expectations and the constant coverage, LeBron emerged with a ring and one of the best individual performances of all time. We all knew while we were watching him score, rebound, pass and defend that we were watching greatness personified.

So, how does James' Finals performance stack up?

Over the following 10 slides, you'll find the 10 best performances since the ABA-NBA merger before the 1976-77 season. 

You won't find Jerry West's incredible scoring outbursts or Bill Russell's exploits en route to his 11 rings, but you will find plenty of modern performances. I don't mean to discount what happened in the past; as a student of NBA history, I have nothing but respect and admiration for the legendary feats of the earlier eras that the NBA had to offer.

However, players then didn't face the same scrutiny that modern-day players have had to deal with, thanks to the 24/7 media coverage. They wanted to win just as badly, but it was a different time.

Once more, I'm not discounting their exploits.

So let's see where our reigning Finals MVP finds himself in the rankings. 

*Note, some of the statistics used in the justifications come from John Hollinger's own set of rankings.

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